Who new a US Civil War game about the navys of the time could become a cult classic, well ok it became a Monday Knight Classic, mainly because of the hours of pleasure that we have had picking on this game, but that is Riverboats.
That said a game of Hammerin’ Iron finally happened and I was there to witness what can only be called Riverboats!.
Lets roll back the clock to when this all started. Cancon this year, two the Monday Knight’s thought they had hit gaming gold with a 1/600th scale US Civil War Riverboat Game. To quote one of the other Monday Knights, ‘you have a Civil War game, with some of most interesting and land battles that ever took place, but instead it is on a river’.
That is right Riverboats does happen on a river, in a period that is really colourful and has interesting history. Since then the two purchasers have been painting, and we as good friends do have not let up on them since. We thought they would never get a game in, indeed they had a number of false starts, but finally on Monday night, on the stadium table in front of the whole club they got a game on.
So here are the two happy riverboater’s.
So a quick overview of the game, it is a 1/600th American Civil War Riverboat battle game, it can be played with or with out hex’s. The game and all the goodies are published by Peter Pig . The Ships themselves look great. They really do, the hex mat is solid needs an iron, but is good, and our Riverboater’s has been busy making terrain for this, the first of all games.
Scenarios are generated and off we go. At this stage all but two of the attendees are around this table, (we call it a stadium game for a reason) not knowing nor understanding , but that didn’t matter cause #Riverboats was on.
At this point before anything has happened, you need to throw a mountain of dice, this is also the only time you need to throw the whole bucket of dice you have.
And the game is on, the person that rolls the most 5’s and 6’s gets to attack. Seems awesome right… It’s just Riverboats.
Terrain is placed and the battle lines are drawn, as fluid as they maybe. In this case the Attacker (Union) are attacking, a Confederate force that has ships in reserve. The terrain looks pretty, and is nice and functional. A sandbank may slow or stop a boat, depending on the draft, as the guys play more I am sure they will be used more.
That ruler in the middle that is a mine field, there was not terrain for that.
This game goes for 6 turns, so it ticks along, but both players can affect the game clock moving forward or backward a turn. The guys have also gone out and had made a whole heap of order cards, just to help the game move along.
The minefield played a part in slowing stuff down, but really they only do things on a 6… that dice that is flying the crowd really wanted a ‘6’, sigh was not to be. This game with two people brand new to the game got it done in no time, (much to the crowds disappointment). You might notice in the photo above there is also a lack of confederate ship’s, well they just have not arrived yet.
Most ships shooting is only a few dice, and the superior gunnery of the command ships really comes home in this game. Some ships like to ram, but don’t mess it up the crowd loves that sort of thing.
In the end the battle happened in the middle of the table. It has been a fantastic ride on the Riverboats. In the end it was the Unions day taking back the catfish hole everybody seems so interested in.
This game has provided up with many hours of jokes and laughter, the game it’s self is quite good. Riverboats might be here to stay for a while longer yet.